Our First Boardwalk under construction in Madison

Madison volunteers build boardwalk structure at Hammonasset

At Hammonasset State Park, at the park entrance, a small crew of volunteers are hard at work building a boardwalk to cross 72 feet of tidal marsh.

38 helical piers will hold the structure and deck that our volunteers are installing. The piers were installed by a local firm, Robert J Barnabei Contracting LLC. The deck is a composite grid material that will allow 88 – 90% of available light through to the marsh grasses.

Hammonasset boardwalk deck

When completed, hopefully in February, the boardwalk will be 10 feet wide and 220 feet long, including ramps, to make the trail as accessible as possible to wheelchairs and persons with limited mobility.

How did we get here? Ginny Raff, our dauntless chair of the Madison SGT Team, spent several years mastering the complexities of the multi-level permitting process, at local, state, and federal levels, including the Army Corps of Engineers, completing certifications, reviews, permits, revisions, and agreements. Three dedicated trail-clearing volunteers have led the design and deck-building effort: Perry Rianhard, David Kelley, a retired builder, and Tedd Raff.

Hammonasset boardwalk deck

The cost of the walkway is $57,000, funded through gifts from the Dorr Foundation in honor of Shirley Punzelt of Madison on her retirement from its Board of Directors, the Long Island Sound License Plate Fund, DEEP, and a Challenge Grant from the Community Foundation of Greater New Haven.

Go see the Boardwalk on January 5, 2013 when Madison will host the first First Saturday Hike of the New Year at 10 am at Hammonasset Beach State Park.